The role of periplasmic disulfide oxidoreductase DsbA in Shiga toxin-producing Escherichia coli O157:H7 (STEC) was investigated. Deletion of dsbA (ΔdsbA) significantly decreased cell motility and alkaline phosphatase activity in STEC. STEC ΔdsbA also showed greater sensitivity to menadione and under low pH conditions. Significant reductions in surface attachment to both biotic (HT-29 epithelial cells) and abiotic (polystyrene and polyvinyl chloride) surfaces were observed in STEC ΔdsbA. In addition, no biofilm formation was detected in STEC ΔdsbA compared to wild-type cells in glass capillary tubes under continuous flow-culture system conditions. In the nematode model Caenorhabditis elegans-killing assay, the deletion of dsbA in STEC resulted in attenuated virulence compared to wild-type cells. STEC ΔdsbA was also found to have a reduced ability to colonize the nematode gut. These results suggest that DsbA plays important roles in biofilm formation and virulence in STEC cells.
- Caenorhabditis elegans
- Disulfide bond